Guide to Understand Bronchitis, Symptoms and Medications.

Due to Bronchitis Virus, the bronchial tubes that carry air to the lungs inflames and are swollen resulting in shortness of breath, wheezing, a fever and chest tightness. This notable germ is present in the domestic chicken. that affects the respiratory, renal system and the female reproductive tract. 

This virus is present globally and has serotype and genotype variants. It was first described in the US by Schalk and Hawn as “an apparently new respiratory disease of chicks”. The study during postmortem finds congestion and mucous exudate in bronchi and trachea and occasionally in the nasal passages.

Infection Bronchitis Virus (IBV) is from the family of coronavirus that envelops itself containing a single-stranded RNA and projection known as spikes on the surface that involves themselves in attaching to the host cells and inducing neutralizing antibodies. The IBV genetically mutate itself and recombine in antigenic drift. Due to this, the vaccine programs for the disease are always changing, and the proper control of the disease is still not present.

There are two main types of bronchitis

  • Acute Bronchitis.
  • Passive Bronchitis.

inflamation due to bronchitis

Acute Bronchitis

Acute Bronchitis is usually common and is due to the virus attacks that cause cold and flu. It often begins as an upper respiratory disease and does not long for many days (usually up to 10 to 15 days). This virus affects the respiratory system and irritates the lungs during breathing of tobacco smoke, dust, air pollution, etc. This can affect people with a weakened immune system or have other diseases.

Chronic Bronchitis

Chronic Bronchitis is very serious and doesn’t go away easily. Its development takes time rather than striking suddenly. In this type of bronchitis, the lungs develop excessive inflammation in the lining of the bronchial tubes. This results in breathing difficulties and increases mucus development in the pipe. According to the American Lung Association, “more than 15.3 million people have been diagnosed with COPD”. COPD is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease which is a type of lung disease and eventually develops to the patients of Chronic Bronchitis.



Symptoms of both the types of bronchitis include:

  • Wheezing
  • Fatigue
  • Tightness or dull pain in the chest
  • Shortness of breath
  • Weight loss
  • Fever
  • Headaches
  • Sore Throat

For people suffering from Chronic Bronchitis, these symptoms can flare up regularly and this affects most people in the winter season.


How do you get infected by Bronchitis?

Smoking, air pollution, dust are the key factors for bronchitis. But others can also develop bronchitis. Acute Bronchitis develops through a virus, flu or cold. Chronic Bronchitis can develop through repeated episodes of acute bronchitis, genetic factors, a history of respiratory disease or exposure to the pesticides for a long time. Asthma or allergies can increase the risk of bronchitis.

When to see a doctor?

Most affected people from acute bronchitis can recover at home with rest and other medications. However, a person suffering from chronic bronchitis should see a doctor if:

  • cough lasts for more than 3 weeks
  • fever lasts more than 4 days
  • blood in the mucus
  • chest pains and rapid breathing
  • drowsiness


It is not possible to prevent both the types of bronchitis, but several things can reduce the risk of getting affected. Quitting smoking is the best prevention that can be helpful. The persons having any type of bronchitis should avoid the places having excessive smoke, dust, fumes, and a higher level of air pollution. For these conditions wearing the masks to cover the mouth and nose can help a lot. Cleanliness and hygiene help in preventing the disease.

medications for bronchitis


The acute bronchitis is a temporary disease and normally goes within weeks. Antibiotics, rest and plenty of fluids can improve the health of a patient of acute bronchitis. A humidifier or steam can be a great way to get rid of mucus. Over-the-counter medicines are also given as treatment by the doctor in these types of cases.

In chronic bronchitis, treatments target the symptoms and can include:

  • Pulmonary Rehabilitation
  • Supplemental Oxygen
  • Surgery
  • Clinical Trials
  • Complementary Therapies
  • Palliative Care
  • Bronchodilators
  • Mucolytics


Exercise can improve your overall health and quality of life. It can improve some symptoms such as weakness, fatigue, shortness of breath and wheezing. This provides you with the strength and to some extent can improve your immune system. Exercise also helps in respiration by improving the diaphragm and intercostal muscles. It even helps in controlling blood pressure and can reduce the stress, tension, anxiety, and depression due to the disease. Exercise will make you feel more relaxed and rested.

Some exercise that can improve the overall health during both types of bronchitis are as follows

  • Breathing exercises
  • Stretching 
  • Cardiovascular exercises, like walking or swimming
  • Improving muscle strength to improve oxygen inefficiency
  • Using humidifier
  • Drinking plenty of fluids
  • The intensity of workouts should be base upon heart rate or overheating.

Certain environmental factors can worsen bronchitis symptoms such as temperature, humidity and air pollution.